Den of the Cyphered Wolf

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Tom Lea/Moore and Chicken George Were Brilliant In New Roots

So I actually like new Roots probably more than old Roots. Mostly because I voluntarily  watched rather than being stuck in the Clockwork Orange chair being told over and over again "this your history boy."

To put it another way. This roots addressed and in someways fixed a lot of the groaner stuff in the original that would always lead to an argument if I pointed it out.

I've already talked about most of  that stuff but the biggest example is the relationship between Tom Moore/Tom Lea and Chicken George.

A lot of the original plays Tom Lea for laughs. He's pathetic and the audience is invited to laugh at, and even on occasion sympathize with him.

The new one makes that patheticness part of the reason why he is so scary. You can't predict him. You can't count on him to act in a way consistent with not only his own self interest but even his own self preservation. And as loathsome as he is if he dies the game is up the small bit of a life the slaves have managed to build for themselves will be gone as they are scattered to the winds by whatever new master they have.

In short everybody knows that this man without even trying could get them killed and that scares the hell out of them.

Another thing worth mentioning is the Nat Turner cart scene in the original. Again with Tom Drunk in the back the scene while dangerous is still played for laughs. Not in the new one. That entire bit is played for "we don't know what's going to happen" drama.

Also there is this weird moment in the original after Tom's wife nearly SHOOTS AND KILLS chicken George that the episode spends trying to explain her rational. There is this shot on Tom's face that makes it seem, "well I got to do what I got to do". Right before he busts through slave cabin door with a shot gun.




ROOTS, the chronicle of a Black family should not be on thier side in this, should not be okay saying, "they did some crazy stuff but they were scared".




For what it's worth Tom Lea in the new one is portrayed as being loathsome and ironically enough George's blindness to it is portrayed as sorrowful.  Every damn bit of foolishness in George was planted there by Tom Lea.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Facebook Comments

Note: These Comments are from all across this blog.